definatly man get the xm it is better overall. but you ned to have kick a** speakers to be able to full utilize the card at least 5.1. save for a new gpu i you dont have a good one such as 7600 gt or higher
Another happy XM user here. Using it with some Logitech 2.1 speakers and it rocks my socks.
About the only complaint is that Creative isn't releasing Linux drivers for the card, and ALSA still hasn't written drivers for Linux either, the X-Fi is a completely new architecture.
Good news is that everything works fine still even if you don't disable onboard sound in the BIOS, so I just have to run an audio cable from the onboard sound on in motherboard to the other input on my speakers. No big deal.
In regards to the videocard, I will be upgrading that in due time to either an 8800 series or the new ATI cards (probably along with a new 22 inch LCD), but I only game at 1280x1024 atm and the 7800 plays all the games I play pretty well (although supreme commander does get laggy when the unit cout gets high)
Looks like I will be going with the X-Fi music (Speakers I have are Creative MegaWorks THX 550)
Just a quick follow up question, how does the X-fi XtremeMusic compare with the Audigy 4 directly in regards to gaming only?
I have an Audigy in one computer and a X-Fi in another. I'd say it depends on the quality of your speakers. I have a Klipsch 5.1 500wt set and the X-Fi is noticably better than the Audigy. Another thing to think about is that so far, Creative has said it won't support the Audigy series with 64 bit drivers, i.e., Vista and XP64, Only the X-Fi series will have Vista support. I only mention this if you have plans to get Vista in the future.
Um, I disagree with everyone here, the extreme gamer is a sound card created for gaming, which is why gaming is in it's name :wink: . The Xtremegamer version is essentially the audio version with a couple extra's for gaming. Here in canada there is a 30-40$ difference between cards, surprised its the same price over in america.
I agree with James 8970, the Xtreme Gamer is designed for gamers! 8O
I have investigated this matter before and the xtreme gamer comes equiped with an additional feature called Xram. This is designed buffer up the game sound files to reduce calls from your harddrive and the like, many engines support this feature including Quake 4, BF2, and yet to be confirmed is the UT3 engine.
Having said that the 24bit core of both of the cards is the same.
xtreme gamer is xtreme music with minor differences.
Both xtreme gamer and music have digital outputs but only gamer has optical output and standard ac97 front panel connector. Xtreme music does not have them. I'd say xtreme gamer has better connectivity then Xtreme music but other then that both cards are pretty equal.
Get the Xtreme Music if they're the same price, and the Gamer if it's cheaper. The only difference between the two is that you can upgrade the Music with the Front I/O Panel in the future if you want. Otherwise, specs-wise they're identical.
The XGamer version does indeed have sound memory, 64 MB if I remember correctly. There are a few games starting to come out that cannot run in the highest sound quality without this onboard memory and it will probably be necessary for whatever EAX is next too. I'd go for the XGamer...even though I own an XMusic myself.
There's 2 Xtreme Gamers. The regular one is basically the Music without the option to upgrade to I/O panel and a smaller overall form factor. The Gamer FPS has the I/O panel and the X-RAM. Personally I don't think the FPS one is really worth the extra money. I don't like front panel connections unless it's a temporary device I'm connecting, and I don't see the benefit of X-RAM to justify the extra money either. Plus anything with l337 speak turns me off, and "Fatal1ty" is a stupid name.